Horizon 2020 is the financial instrument implementing the Innovation Union, a Europe 2020 flagship initiative aimed at securing Europe’s global competitiveness. Running from 2014 to 2020 with an €80 billion budget, the EU’s new programme for research and innovation is part of the drive to create new growth and jobs in Europe.
Horizon 2020 provides major simplification through a single set of rules. It will combine all research and innovation funding currently provided through the Framework Programmes for Research and Technical Development, the innovation related activities of the Competitiveness and Innovation Framework Programme (CIP) and the European Institute of Innovation and Technology (EIT).
The proposed support for research and innovation under Horizon 2020 will:
- Strengthen the EU’s position in science with a dedicated budget of € 24 598 million. This will provide a boost to top-level research in Europe, including an increase in funding of 77% for the very successful European Research Council (ERC).
- Strengthen industrial leadership in innovation € 17 938 million. This includes major investment in key technologies, greater access to capital and support for SMEs.
- Provide € 31 748 million to help address major concerns shared by all Europeans such as climate change, developing sustainable transport and mobility, making renewable energy more affordable, ensuring food safety and security, or coping with the challenge of an ageing population.
Horizon 2020 will tackle societal challenges by helping to bridge the gap between research and the market by, for example, helping innovative enterprise to develop their technological breakthroughs into viable products with real commercial potential. This market-driven approach will include creating partnerships with the private sector and Member States to bring together the resources needed.
Horizon 2020 will be complemented by further measures to complete and further develop the European Research Area by 2014. These measures will aim at breaking down barriers to create a genuine single market for knowledge, research and innovation.
To support and aid potential South African Framework Programme participants, the Department of Science and Technology (DST) has created a number of dedicated support instruments, which can be found on the Co-Investment Funding and the Seed Funding support pages.